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Photograph: Supplied

Alternative hen's party ideas in Melbourne

Treat the bride-to-be to these unexpected and adventurous hen's party ideas

By Nicola Dowse and Rose Johnstone

We don't want to put the penis straw industry out of business, but they do not make a hen's party. Nor does a dollar-shop sash or a stripper. These things are all fine, but if you really want to have a good time then try out one of these unorthodox group activities for your hen's party. 

For more hen's adventures, check out the 101 things to do in Melbourne before you die; or blow your whole budget on a fancy dinner at one of the best restaurants in town.

Top hen's party ideas in Melbourne

1. Gallop down the coast with Gunnamatta Trail Rides

Rustle up your gals (or guys, let’s not be too traditional) and saddle up for a two-hour horse ride along the stunning Mornington Peninsula. This company also offers packages for groups, so you can soak in the Peninsula Hot Springs after your ride or sit down to lunch at the St Andrews Beach Brewery.

Cost: Rides start at $99 per person. 

Harry Potter still life painting
Image: Supplied

2. Try a boozy painting class

You might think it's harder to paint when tipsy but actually a glass or two of booze will help you and your friends really unleash your creativity. Plus you'll get to take home the painting you create so you've all got a memento. Tipples and Tints offers literature-themed painting classes at Storyville in the CBD; classes include a complimentary cocktail and additional drinks are available at bar prices.

Cost: From $63 per person.

Photograph: Supplied

4. Have a picnic on the Yarra

For a low-key hen's, round up seven of your closest mates (or maybe just your bridal party), pack a picnic and hop on a GoBoat. These eco-friendly sea vessels don't need a boat licence to captain, and thanks to the handy table in the middle of the boat, it's easy to have a full-on feast on the Yarra (BYO food and booze). 

Cost: $109 for one hour, $189 for two hours or $269 for three hours.

Food at Brae
Photograph: Collin Page

5. Splash out on a five-star meal at Brae

Hit the road towards Cape Otway until you reach Brae, chef Dan Hunter’s award-winning restaurant. Impossibly creative dishes featuring ingredients selected from Hunter’s on-site veggie garden make this is the sort of fine dining experience that stays with you long after your friend’s wedding. To complete the experience, opt to stay in one of the six on-site guest suites.

Cost: Menu from $290 per person; double rooms from $615 per night (including breakfast).

6. Learn a new skill at Work-Shop

The folks at Fitzroy’s Work-Shop know how to throw a wild(ish) crafternoon. Make your own jewellery, learn how to make cheese, or stay on-theme with DIY wedding signage and mindful sex classes. Work-Shop can tailor any class to your needs, is flexible with class numbers, and the studio is conveniently located near all the clubs and bars of Fitzroy (just saying).

Cost: Classes start from $20 per person.

Circus Oz adult classes, circus, Melbourne
Photograph: Scott Hone

7. Swing into Circus Oz for the day

Adventurous brides-to-be will jump at the chance to fly on the trapeze, swing on the silks and balance on the tightwire. Circus Oz runs two-hour classes in their Collingwood headquarters and can tailor the experience to whatever takes your fancy: aerial apparatus, floor-based skills, balance work, hula hooping or a custom combination.

Cost: Classes start from $370 for up to eight people.

Hands picking up food and cocktails
Photograph: Supplied

8. Learn how to shake up fancy cocktails

Give a woman a cocktail and she’ll have a great night; teach a woman to mix a cocktail and she’ll have many great nights. The Emerson runs hen's party cocktail classes where you learn how to mix like a pro. You’ll get the chance to make three cocktails – just the right amount to kickstart any hen's – with complimentary canapes and a bottle of sparkling wine.

Cost: $75 per person, minimum of ten people.

Want to kick on afterwards?

Cocktail at Romeo Lane
Photograph: Nathalie Saldumbide

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